James Gunn Says Velma Was Supposed To Be Explicitly Gay In His Scooby-Doo Movie


The live-action Scooby-Doo movies from the early 00s remain beloved by Mystery Inc. fans who grew up with them. For one, the cast rounded up for the films was great, including Freddie Prinze Jr., Sarah Michelle Gellar and Matthew Lillard, who’s of course gone on to voice Shaggy full-time in the cartoons. And let’s not forget Linda Cardellini as Velma, whose performance as the bespectacled brainbox was a particular highlight.

But originally, there was something about the character that would’ve made her even more of an icon, if only writer James Gunn was allowed to go through with it. Gunn, who wrote the scripts for both 2002’s Scooby-Doo and 2004’s Scooby-Doo: Monsters Unleashed, was asked on Twitter if he could make “our live-action lesbian Velma dreams come true” by a fan. The Guardians of the Galaxy filmmaker replied that he tried his best to make it happen back in the day.

“I tried!,” Gunn said. “In 2001 Velma was explicitly gay in my initial script. But the studio just kept watering it down & watering it down, becoming ambiguous (the version shot), then nothing (the released version) & finally having a boyfriend (the sequel).”

Fans may know that Gunn initially penned a more mature script for a version of the movie aimed at older audiences. Over the course of production, though, the studio lost their nerve and Gunn had to rework his screenplay. Not to mention many filmed scenes that were deemed too adult were removed from the final cut. Clearly, Velma’s sexuality was one of the casualties. And, by the sounds of it, it was at WB’s request that Gunn gave Velma a straight relationship with Seth Green’s character in the sequel.

If you’re wondering if Gunn could ever get the cast together for a third Scooby-Doo flick and correct history, unfortunately it doesn’t seem like that’s on the cards. Someone else asked him this and the director remarked that it wouldn’t really be possible given the long gap since the second.

Of course, Gunn did pen a script for Scooby-Doo 3 back in the day, but it never got made due to Monsters Unleashed not doing big enough business. It took 16 years for another big budget Scooby-Doo flick to be produced – this year’s animated venture Scoob! – but we still didn’t get an openly gay Velma. Maybe one day, though.